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Once you can snowboard, you could learn some tricks to impress your fellow boarders, your friends, or you could even learn some snowboard tricks to perform in competition.
The first trick a boarder must learn before progressing to other more advanced snowboard tricks is the ollie. The ollie is a no-handed aerial that uses only your momentum and a few foot movements to lift off the slope while controlling the board.
To do: ride standing upright with by your side and at a comfortable speed. Bend your knees. Crouch down. Place all your weight on your back foot and lift the nose of your board. Now, propel yourself upward. The front of the board comes up first, then lift your back leg to level out. Land both feet at the same time.
The next step after you are comfortable with straight airs and landings is to add a spin. The frontside 180 is a trick that should be done off of a snowboard jump.
First, survey the jump and figure out where the landing should be and how fast you'll have to be going to get there. When you know you can make the landing safely without going too short or overshooting it, hike up and begin.
To do: begin riding with your arms down and relaxed. Ride off the lip, do not jump, allow your momentum to bring you up. Turn your shoulders frontside (so the front of your board is higher in the air) and start to bring your knees up as you reach the peak of your height.
Rotate your upper body and let your legs follow so that you are facing the direction you will be going. Land on both feet with knees bent.
One of the slightly more difficult snowboard tricks than the frontside air is the backside air. Just as you start the frontside air in the flat, arms by your sides, knees bent as you are riding up the wall – you start the backside air.
Pop off the tail of your board, just as in the frontside air. At first, practice this snowboard technique without a grab, but as you get more advanced, reach behind your front foot and grab the back edge of your board.
Don't try to move through the transition too quickly – it is easier to land than a frontside grab because you can see where you are going, but some snowboarders tend to land too far out into the flat. You want to land higher on the wall.
One of the snowboarding techniques you'll need to learn before performing a frontside air snowboard trick in the pipe is a frontside turn. A frontside air is a turn with front of your board higher than the back of your board, accept it is two feet (and later more) above the edge of the pipe.
To do: ride across the flat bottom of the pipe, arms by your sides, knees bent. Ride up the wall, slowly raising your arms. Ride off the lip – don't jump, just keep riding off. After the tail of the board is off the lip, bring your knees to your chest.
Reach down and grab the board between your feet once you reach the high point. As you start to let go of your board, aim your shoulder at a landing place you have spotted. Land as high on the wall as possible.
Two of the more advanced snowboard tricks you'll see, and are just sane enough to want to try, are the backside 360 and the McTwist.
Backside 360: ride into the jump on a flat base on or your heel edge. When you get to the take off, put all your weight on your toes. At the same time, rotate your head and shoulders backside to begin the spin. Rotate as one unit and not jerky. Compact your body as much as possible – this will make it easier. Spot your landing when you come around and land square with both feet.
Snowboard trick tip: Get a professional to teach you the McTwist. It is a 540 turn around the vertical axis as well as a 360 turn around the horizontal axis. Good luck.
Some snowboard tricks are named for their inventors. The Cab 540 is named after skateboarder Steve Caballero. The Cab 540 is actually half of a Caballerial, the original trick, which is to ride up backwards and rotate around forward.
Learn to ride your snowboard backwards, fakie, or switch. Ride as fast as you would for a frontside 180.
Ride off the lip and gather yourself in the air. Turn your shoulders in the direction you are going. Pull your knees up as much as you can and spread your arms in the air. Now, you can land in your “normal” direction.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|